So Austin has set up a great site called the Austin City Connection.? The front page is a little tough to navigate, I have to admit, but I link to some of the pages within the site and check back periodically to see what's changed. One of these pages buried on this site is a map of local businesses and of local business districts where local businesses are strongly represented.? Right now that includes the districts around South 1st Street (pictured below), East 5th Street, East 6th Street, East 11th-12th streets, Guadalupe, and North Loop Blvd.? Its complete with different icons for art, automotive, health, construction, eateries, engineering, laywers, real estate, retail, service, etc.? There are a few obvious omissions still (South Congress anyone?) but I really like the treatment of each area rather than just trying to look at one map of all of Austin at once.
Buried at the bottom of the page is a set of links for "all business types", which lets you see the whole Austin map with businesses of that type highlighted.? And sure enough if you click on Consulting, there we are in the northwest quadrant of the map, although you have to zoom in to see us because in this view we're buried right under Red Velvet Events, which is in the same building with us:
It seems like a great investment any city can make in their community, at very little cost. By focusing on business districts, the site focuses more on the way people shop - hitting several places in one area, rather than jumping around from one area to the next. Cities do so much to promote big business (tax incentives, tax rebates), it's nice to see the city doing something to promote local providers of all kinds